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Country should have self-reliant economy: PM



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By Laxmi Prasad Upadhyaya
Kathmandu, Mar. 21: Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba has said that development of the country will be impossible without building a self-reliant economy.
Addressing the sixth meeting of the Board of Trade in the capital on Sunday, the Prime Minister stressed production of domestic goods to minimise the growing imports and directed the ministry to follow policy and programmes that focus on creating the self-reliant economy. Currently, PM Deuba is also looking after the portfolio of the Ministry of Industry.

"Enhance exports by identifying the goods that have high export potential and have comparative advantages, promote and prioritise domestic goods, and formulate laws that motivate the private sector," he directed the concerned agencies and authorities.

Joint Secretary at the ministry Dr. Narayan Prasad Regmi said that Prime Minister Deuba directed the MoICS to form a task force to provide necessary suggestions on the course of action to be taken to address the current liquidity problem and pressure on foreign exchange reserve.

Secretary at the ministry Dr. Ganesh Prasad Pandey had presented a working paper on the current status of Nepal's international trade, its challenges and alternatives for the imports management.
Members of the board from the private sector had demanded review of the policies related to investment, and promotion of production and use of domestic goods. Likewise, they suggested creating investment-friendly environment in education, health and agriculture to attract foreign investment in those sectors. The participants also suggested formulating an inter-governmental mechanism with the participation of the private sector to find out policy alternatives to the management of imports and promotion of exports.

State Minister for State Umesh Shrestha, Vice-chairman of the National Planning Committee Dr. Bishwo Nath Poudel and member Dr. Ram Kumar Phuyal, Chief Secretary Shankar Das Bairagi, Governor of the Nepal Rastra Bank Maha Prasad Adhikari and experts of the commerce and industry were present during the meeting.